Is This Brass Safe?

Is This Brass Safe?

Q: Recently at the range, I was picking up .45 ACP cases after a heavy rain. I noticed that the cases had temper colors on them from falling into the puddles. Are these cases still safe to reload and use or should I just discard them?--Lynn, via e-mail.

A: Lynn, it's important to be concerned about the temper of cartridge brass. If the head of the brass softens from annealing, it could result in a case rupture of your reloads. That said, it's not likely that firing a cartridge would cause it to heat up to a high enough temperature for a long enough time to soften the head. If it was, then no fired brass would be usable for reloading. Quenching brass (as in your puddles) has no effect on the annealing. Provided there is no other problem with that brass, then it should be fine for reloading.--SEM

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